A cop trying to stop a cyber-terrorist on the 4th of July, a charismatic smuggler who helps to save a princess and the galaxy, a maniac in a hockey mask going around and murdering teenagers, a mother trying to save her child from a violent abuser, and a robot sent from the future to protect the savior of mankind: what do these individuals have in common? They are all memorable characters from various movies, and they are only a portion of the vast array of memorable characters from different genres that appear throughout movie history.
One of the things that really make a character memorable, is their ability to leave the viewer with a lasting impression; and a character can do that in many ways. A character can be remembered for being funny, emotionally damaged, heroic, villainous, adorable, scary, kind, violent, and creepy. There have been many creepy movie characters, characters who range from being somewhat creepy to those that are creepy as hell; and whether it is because of their appearance or their actions, they are characters that should always be remembered for being creepy in one way or another. Here is a list of 10 creepy movie characters you forgot about.
10. Isaac – Children of the Corn
Isaac is an example of a very young creepy character. In the movie adaption of the Stephen King short-story of the same name, Children of the Corn deals with the young Isaac serving as a sort of preacher for a God-like entity known as “He Who Walks Behind the Rows.” Isaac manages to convert all of the town’s older children into worshipping this God, and orders them to kill all of the town’s adults; he then convinces them that anyone over eighteen must be sacrificed in the cornfield. This god turns out to be a demon, and when Isaac himself is sacrificed, his body is used as a demonic vessel. John Franklin, who played Isaac, did a great job of showing how terrifyingly creepy a teenage preacher can be.
9. Willy Wonka – Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
You knew something was off with Willy Wonka the first time he appeared on screen, when he went from pretending to be an old and slightly disabled looking man, to a lively and energetic one. Throughout the movie, Wonka transitions from being a kindhearted candy-maker who freely gives chocolate to the children visiting his factory, to an unsympathetic person who seems to be more entertained than concerned when the lives of those same children seem to be in danger. Wonka even shows a deranged megalomaniac side of himself near the end of the movie, when he berates young Charlie for having some childish fun. Johnny Depp attempted to portray the character in 2005, and even though that Willy Wonka was a strange and weird individual, it does not compare to the creepy and un-balanced version that Gene Wilder will forever be known for.
8. Garland Greene – Con Air
The movie Con Air deals with inmates who escape from prison after hijacking the aircraft that was supposed to transport them to Alabama; Garland Greene was among those inmates. Garland was known as “The Marietta Mangler” a serial killer who had murdered over thirty people in such horrid ways that his killings “made the Manson Family look like the Partridge Family.” What really makes this character creepy, is not the fact that he is played by Steve Buscemi, but the fact that he spends time alone with a little girl after escaping. The moments he spends with her offer so much uncomfortable tension, especially since it is revealed earlier that Garland had previously worn another little girl’s head as a hat during his killing spree.
7. Damien – The Omen
Throughout movie history, there have been many creepy children, and Damien from the original Omen movie, is one of the oldest and most iconic of them all. Damien is the Antichrist, and has an array of individuals who watch over him, including a hellhound and a murderous nanny. In the movie, he may not know that he is the son of Satan, or that he possesses supernatural powers, but people around him still end up dead. Harvey Stephens, who played Damien, did a great job of maintaining Damien’s sweet face throughout the movie, but it is his cold eyes and blank stares that make him one of the creepiest kids in movie history.
6. Frank Booth – Blue Velvet
In Blue Velvet, Dennis Hopper plays Frank Booth, and if you want to see a real creepy character, than Frank is your man. Booth is a drug dealer, a pimp and a psychotic gangster; and in the movie he kidnaps a female singer’s husband and child in order to make her satisfy his violent sexual desires. During these forced sexual encounters, Frank exhibits a split personality, with his “Daddy” persona who beats and degrades her, and his “Baby” persona who begs her to gag him with a blue velvet cloth as he assaults her.
5. Pennywise – It
Many people suffer from an innate fear of clowns, and the clown played by Tim Curry known as Pennywise from the movie It, is a prime example of why people suffer from Coulrophobia. Based solely on his outward appearance, Pennywise looks like an ordinary clown, with his big hair, bright red nose, and floppy shoes, but in actuality, Pennywise is a form taken by the entity known as It, an entity that has existed since the beginning of the universe. It is capable of taking on multiple forms, but it chooses to take the form of a clown in order to attract its main food
4. Jame Gumb “Buffalo Bill” – Silence of the Lambs
In the movie adaption of Silence of the Lambs, Ted Levine did a great job of bringing the Jame Gumb character, otherwise known as Buffalo Bill, to the big-screen. In the movie, Buffalo Bill is a serial killer who targets overweight weight women and uses their skin to make a “woman-suit” for himself. He would approach these women and ask them for their help while pretending to be injured, only to knock them out and take them to his basement, where he throws them into a well and starves them until their skin becomes loose and easier to remove. To this day, his line, “It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again” remains one of the creepiest phrases spoken in all movie history.
3. Norman Bates – Psycho
One of the creepiest movie characters has to be Norman Bates from the Alfred Hitchcock movie Psycho. Norman was based on a murderer named Ed Glen, who would kill women and break into the graves of dead women to take their skin so he could wear them himself. In the movie, Norman appears to be a perfectly normal person who is running a motel for his mother; but in reality, Norman had killed his mother along with her lover ten years earlier out of jealousy. He digs her up out of guilt, and acts as if she is still alive, developing a split personality based on his mother along the way, which eventually causes him to dress like her and kill in her name. Bates Motel may do a good job at showing a teenage Norman as he slowly becomes the Norman seen in the movie, but nothing will ever compare to the creepiness of the original psycho.
2. Frank Hallet – The Little Girl who Lives Down the Lane
Martin Sheen will likely always be known best for playing the president of the United States on The West Wing; but it is one of his earlier works that will forever label him as one of the creepiest characters in film. In The Little Girl who Lives Down the Lane, Sheen plays Frank Hallet, a young adult who makes sexual advances towards a thirteen year old girl; he also makes unwanted visits to her house and follows her in public. If that did not suggest that Hallet was a creepy pedophile, then the fact that he actually tries to force the girl into giving him sexual favors in return for keeping her secret definitely does.
1. The Child Catcher – Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
The creepiest movie character that has ever appeared on screen has to be The Child Catcher from the movie Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. The movie revolves around a pair of siblings who find a woman that their father falls in love with; they end up becoming a family with a flying car. There is an evil Baron and Baroness in the movie however, who want the family’s car, so they use The Child Catcher, whose job is to capture children, to abduct the family’s kids. Not only does his physical appearance make him a creepy site to behold, but the way he skips around, and lures out children by ringing a bell and promising to give them sweets is also very creepy, even by today’s standards.